Glasgow, UK: The Glasgow based human rights organisation Global Minorities Alliance (GMA) has completed its first phase of a gender development project which was launched earlier this year.
In January, 2020, GMA opened the Chiragh Din Welfare centre in MariahKhel, Punjab, Pakistan which aimed at equipping local village women with sewing skills and provide them an opportunity to earn and support their families financially.
GMA launched its first three months sewing course in August, 2020 which was supported by GMA funds. GMA provided sewing machines and material for women to help them support during this challenging time.
On 10 December, 2020, a certificate ceremony was held in the village where certificates were distributed to the women who completed their sewing course.
GMA’s Pakistan co-ordinator, Farida Jerome said that we are thankful to GMA for providing local women an opportunity to learn new skills and help them support their families.
One participant of the programme said, ‘We are thankful to GMA who has provided us a skill development opportunity so we can support our families especially during this pandemic’.
GMA’s Project Coordinator, Shahzad Khan who oversaw the delivery of the program said, ‘The Cover-19 pandemic has hit women disproportionately all around the world. In developing countries like Pakistan, this is especially true as there are no formal or state level support structures.’
Mr Khan said, ‘We are thankful to our donors who enabled us to reach out to women in MariahKhel and to offer them an opportunity to learn new skills to support their families and community which has been suffering severely from the impact of Covid-19. GMA will shortly launch a new fundraising campaign for the 2021 cohort of the project.’
We have written to the Health Scretary to call on him to take steps to allieviate the hightened risk that the Coronavirus poses on BAME communities. The letter was also shared with our local MP and MSP.
Update: Since posting the letter, Public Health England (PHE) has published “COVID-19: review of disparities in risks and outcomes” which includes statistics on BAME communities. However, the analysis is mainly based on summary statistics and graphs and it completely lacks any recommedations to address the hightened risks BAME communities face. GMA would not recognise the PHE report as a substitute for the promised review and still expects the Health Secretary to provide a more detailed review that includes cross-sectional analysis as well as steps to protect our BAME communities better.